Midwestern agriculture has carried the bulk of agtech investment over the years. But that is starting to change, according to Western Growers CEO Dave Puglia.

The “runway in the Midwest is running out,” he said in a discussion for the State Ag Board on Wednesday. Puglia added that technology will help to keep farming viable in the face of rising costs for regulatory compliance and labor in the state. Farm jobs, he said, will not go away as automation progresses but will be replaced with higher-quality work.

With the internal combustion engine’s final days now being counted, Puglia said that is not necessarily something to fear. He was, however, nervous about grid reliability as public safety power shutoffs have become more common.